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Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediments (ARCS) Program

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Prepared by
Michael Giordano and Evelyn Meagher-Hartzell
Science Applications International Corporation
Cincinnati, OH

for the
Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediments (ARCS) Program
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Great Lakes National Program Office
Chicago, Illinois


The information in this document has been funded wholly or in part by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under Contract No. 68-C8-0062, Work Assignment No. 3-52, to Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). It has been subjected to the Agency's peer and administrative review and it has been approved for publication as an EPA document.

Bench-Scale Evaluation of SoilTech's Anaerobic Thermal Process Technology on Contaminated Sediments from the Buffalo and Grand Calumet Rivers

US Environmental Protection Agency. 1994. Abstract and Table of Contents for "Bench-Scale Evaluation of SoilTech's Anaerobic Thermal Process Technology on Contaminated Sediments from the Buffalo and Grand Calumet Rivers," EPA 905-R94-009. Chicago, Ill.: Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO).

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This report was prepared by the Engineering/Technology Work Group (ETWG) as part of the Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediments (ARCS) program. Dr. Stephen Yaksich, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Buffalo District, was chairman of the Engineering/Technology Work Group.

The ARCS Program was managed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO). Mr. David Cowgill and Dr. Marc Tuchman of GLNPO were the ARCS program managers. Mr. Dennis Timberlake of the USEPA Risk Reduction Engineering Laboratory was the technical project manager for this project. Mr. Stephen Garbaciak of USACE Chicago District and GLNPO was the project coordinator.

This report was drafted through Contract No. 68-C8-0062, Work Assignment No. 3-52, to Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). Michael Giordano and Evelyn Meagher-Hartzell of SAIC were the principal authors of the report, with final editing and revisions made by Mr. Garbaciak prior to publication.

This report should be cited as follows:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 1994. "Bench-Scale Evaluation of SoilTech's Anaerobic Thermal Process Technology on Contaminated Sediments from the Buffalo and Grand Calumet Rivers," EPA 905-R94-009, Great Lakes National Program Office, Chicago, IL.

ABSTRACT

The Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO) leads efforts to carry out the provisions of Section 118 of the Clean Water Act (CWA) and to fulfill U.S. obligations under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (GLWQA) with Canada. Under Section 118(c)(3) of the CWA, GLNPO was responsible for undertaking a 5-year study and demonstration program for the remediation of contaminated sediments. GLNPO initiated an Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediments (ARCS) Program to carry out this responsibility. In order to develop a knowledge base from which informed decisions may be made, demonstrations of sediment treatment technologies were conducted as part of the ARCS Program. A bench-scale study using the SoilTech Anaerobic Thermal Process technology is the subject of this report. This study took place at the development laboratory of UMATAC Industrial Processes in Calgary, AB, Canada on August 19 to 22, 1991. The specific objectives for this effort were to determine process extraction efficiencies for polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs); to conduct a mass balance for solids, water, oil, PCBs, and PAHs; and to examine process effects on metals, oil and grease, and several other parameters.

The SoilTech ATP technology was tested using sediment samples obtained from the Buffalo and Grand Calumet Rivers. The concentration of the contaminants of concern in the sediments were .34 and 10.7 mg/kg PCBs respectively and 8.7 and 235 mg/kg PAHs respectively. The PCB removal from the Grand Calumet River was 72 percent. Because of the very low concentration of PCBs in the Buffalo River sediment it was not possible to make an effective assessment of the PCB removal. The PAH removal from both sediments was 99 percent. Metals analysis were performed on the treated solids and untreated sediments. The data appear to demonstrate that metal removal was significant for the Grand Calumet River sediment. There is no explanation for these results. It should not be attributable to treatment by the ATP technology. The feed and treated solids were analyzed for percent moisture, oil and grease, total organic carbon (TOC), volatile solids, and pH. The reductions in oil and grease, TOC, and total volatile solids concentrations correspond to sediment PCB and PAH removal. Analytical methods used to measure these parameters may be used as low-cost methods for estimating performance. A mass balance for solids, oil, water, PCBs, and PAHs was carried out as part of this study. 


Table Of Content 

1.0 Executive Summary

2.0 Introduction
2.1 Background
2.2 Sediment Descriptions
2.3 Sediment Characterization
2.4 Technology Description

3.0 Treatability Study Approach
3.1 Test Objectives and Rationale
3.2 Experimental Design and Procedures
3.3 Sampling and Analysis

4.0 Results and Discussion
4.1 Summary of Phase I Results
4.2 Phase II Results
4.3 Quality Assurance/Quality Control


1.0 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The SoilTech ATP technology was tested using sediments obtained from the Buffalo River and Grand Calumet River. The contaminants of concern in the sediments were PCBs and PAHs. Samples of the feed material and the treated solids produced using the SoilTech ATP technology (i.e., the solids produced by the Batch Pyrolysis Unit and Batch Combustor) were analyzed by Battelle Marine Sciences Laboratory for residual PCB contamination. The data from these analyses are presented in Table 1.

As shown in Table 1, a greater than 72 percent removal was associated with the Grand Calumet River sediment. Since the concentrations of individual Aroclors present within the feed and treated solids for the Buffalo River sample are very close to or below detection limits, a meaningful removal efficiency cannot be calculated for this sediment. The potential errors associated with the data prevent the effective assessment of the PCB removal efficiency associated with the Buffalo River sediment. 

Table 1.  Summary of Total PCBs
(mg/kg, dry)

Retort
Sample
Feed Solids[1,2] Tailings[1,3] % Removal
Buffalo River 0.338 <5 <5 NC
Grand Calumet 10.7 <3 <3 >72
[1] Adjusted to account for sand dilution
[2] Solids produced by the Batch Pyrolysis Unit
[3] Solids produced by the Batch Combustor
NC = Not Calculated

Feed material and treated solids were also analyzed for residual PAH concentrations. Table 2 outlines the analytical results obtained by Battelle. As shown in Table 2, removals of 98.7 and 99.3 percent were realized for the Buffalo River and Grand Calumet River sediments, respectively. 

Table 2.  Summary of Total PAHs
(mg/kg, dry)

Sample Feed Retort Solids[1] Tailings[1] % Removal[1]
Buffalo River 8.72 <3.6 0.109 98.7
Grand Calumet 235 0.128 1.61 99.3
[1] Adjusted to account for sand dilution

Metal analyses were performed on the treated solids and untreated sediments (see Table 13). The elevated percent removals associated with the Grand Calumet River sediment for metals should not be attributed to treatment by the ATP technology. At this time there is not an explanation for these anomalies. The feed and treated solids were also analyzed for percent moisture, oil and grease, TOC, volatile solids, and pH (see Table 14). As the data in Table 14 demonstrate, the reductions in oil and grease, TOC, and total volatile solids concentrations correspond to sediment PCB and PAH removal. Analytical methods used to measure these parameters may be used as low-cost methods for estimating performance.

A mass balance was also carried out as part of this study. Table 3 summarizes the results obtained for the different constituents: solids, oil, water, PCBs, and PAHs. Cross-contamination of the Batch Pyrolysis Unit between Grand Calumet River and Buffalo River runs may be responsible for the high oil and PAH recoveries associated with the Buffalo River sediment.

 

Table 3. Mass Balance Summary (%)
Retort
Sample
Solids Tailings Water Oil  PCBs PAHs
Buffalo River 110 78.9 59.4 187 29.1 839
Grand Calumet River 92.7 NC 138.8 28.9 16.2 69
NC = Not Calculated (broken container caused losses)

"Hopper to hopper" cost estimates for other Great Lake sediments containing similar levels of PAHs and PCBs were previously estimated by SoilTech at about $180 per ton for a 10 ton-per-hour operation. Major factors affecting this estimate are the condition and properties of the feed sediment (i.e., moisture, total contamination, and soil characterization). Pending an engineering evaluation of these parameters, this estimate is considered preliminary and may vary substantially. Please note, these costs pertain to the restricted scope of soil/sediment processing, and exclude of other project functions (i.e., general site control and management, construction of utilities and equipment pads, site health and safety controls, excavation and materials management, performance testing, permitting, etc.).

Small vials of the residuals from the treatability test were retained and given to the EPA Technical Project Manager for the GLNPO for "show" purposes. All quantities of the test products (water, solids and oil residuals) from each treatability test were sent to the analytical laboratory, Battelle, for analysis. Due to the small quantities generated from the tests, none were retained and shipped to EPA for possible further treatability studies.

It should be noted that data presented regarding contaminant concentrations within the treated solids have been corrected for the dilution resulting from the addition of sand to the feed. Furthermore, since the solids produced after the treatment in the Batch Combustor are representative of the overall effectiveness of the ATP, removal efficiencies were calculated using the contaminant concentrations found in the solids. Except for oil and grease, the contaminants introduced with the sand had a minimal impact on the quality of the treated solids obtained. Thus, adjustments to the concentration of these contaminants within the treated solids were unnecessary.


FIGURES

  1. ARCS Priority Areas of Concern
  2. Grand Calumet River Sample Location
  3. Buffalo River Sample Location
  4. Simplified ATP Flow Diagram

TABLES

  1. Summary of Total PCBs
  2. Summary of Total PAHs
  3. Mass Balance Summary
  4. Battelle Data - Characterization of Feed Sediments
  5. Parameters for Analysis of ARCS Technologies
  6. Experimental Conditions Used During Phase I Tests
  7. Samples Collected by SoilTech During the Phase I Tests
  8. SoilTech Analyses
  9. SoilTech Analytical Matrix and Sample Identification
  10. Summary of Operating Conditions During a Full-Scale Application
  11. Total PCBs
  12. Feed and Treated Solids PAH Concentrations
  13. Metals Concentration in the Feed and Treated Solids
  14. Removal Efficiencies for Other Parameters
  15. PAH Concentrations in the Tailings, Water, and Oil
  16. PCB Concentrations in the Tailings, Water, and Oil
  17. Solid Mass Balance
  18. Water Mass Balance
  19. Battelle Data-Oil Mass Balance
  20. PCB Mass Balance
  21. PAH Mass Balance

 


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